New Delhi: In a rare instance, the Home Ministry has asked an RTI applicant to prove he is an Indian before disclosing details about the one-member panel looking into the missing files related to the alleged fake encounter case of Ishrat Jahan. Senior IAS officer B.K. Prasad, Additional Secretary in the Home Ministry, heads the inquiry panel.
The RTI application was filed with the Ministry seeking copies of reports submitted by the panel besides file notings related to extension in service given to Prasad.
In a related development, the findings of the Union ministry of home affairs’ (MHA) internal inquiry to find out how documents related to the Ishrat Jahan encounter case went missing and who was responsible could embarrass the Congress as they reveal that the papers were “removed knowingly or unknowingly, or misplaced” between September 18-28, 2009, when P. Chidambaram was Union home minister.
The one-man probe, conducted by B.K. Prasad, an additional secretary in the MHA, however, has failed to prove conclusively how the documents went missing and who was responsible. In his report to Union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi, Mr Prasad said he could trace only one of the five missing documents.
“It is evident that the documents were removed knowingly or unknowingly, or misplaced," the report states. But the 52-page report does not mention Mr Chidambaram or whether the then home minister had any role in the disappearance of the papers. The one-man committee examined as many as 11 serving and retired MHA officers, including former home secretary G.K. Pillai and three joint secretaries who had handled the sensitive Internal Security Division.
The five crucial documents that are missing include an office copy of the letter and enclosure sent by the then home secretary to the attorney general on September 18, 2009.